Dow Ekes Out a Gain of 9 Points on a Freaky Friday

By Teresa Rivas Sept. 14, 2018 5:32 p.m. ET

Whipsawed. Stocks started the day higher before getting broadsided by threats of more tariffs, but recovered in the last hour of trading, with only the Nasdaq ending in the red. In today’s After the Bell, we…

discuss the market’s back-and forth; talk about why another crisis is possible, but not probable, yet; and look at NiSource’s(NI) nearly 12% tumble.

Swing Town

Stocks went on a wild ride on Friday: After pushing higher at the open on hopes of more trade talks, threats of more tariffs sent indexes down by midday. Still, hope springs eternal, and only the Nasdaq failed to stage a recovery.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 8.68 points, or 0.03%, to 26154.67, while the S&P 500 rose 0.80 points, or 0.03% to 2904.98, the longest winning streak for the latter since mid-February. The Nasdaq Composite lost 3.67, or 0.05%, to 8010.04. All three indexes were up for the week.

Today’s action was a neat microcosm of equity markets activity in recent months: U.S. investors are concerned about tariffs, but are able to recover from worrying headlines fairly quickly, comforted by strong economic data at home.

“In the United States, we continue to observe above-trend fundamental data, including strong corporate earnings, capital expenditures (business investment) and consumer sentiment,” writes BlackRock Multi-Asset Strategies’ Michael Fredericks. Domestic stocks easily outpacing their international counterparts last month, with the S&P 500 climbing more than 3% in August, while other areas of the world, like Europe, were stuck in the red. Fredericks believes that U.S.’s outperformance will continue near term, leading him to favor domestic-focused assets.


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